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Seattle Summer Camps for Kids and Adults with Special Needs

Kids will make the most of summer at these fun and supportive camps

Published on: February 07, 2024

Kids with special needs at a summer camp

Differently abled kids and adults deserve different camps. So do those dealing with issues such as cancer, grief or diabetes. In these programs, kids can relax among peers who understand what they are going through while having a great summer camp experience. Read on to find out about camps for the deaf, cancer patients and their siblings, those who have experienced a death in the family, have diabetes or physical disabilities from mild to severe, and others. Many camps accept respite funds.

Camp Beausite Northwest (Chimacum)

Camp Beausite Northwest provides a summer camp experience for children and adults with disabilities from mild to severe. Campers ages 7–99 participate in traditional camp activities in a developmentally appropriate format. The camp offers all care ratios (with limited 1-to-1 care) and has up to four spots available for wheelchairs per camp. It also offers a One-to-Fun Camp for children and adults who require 1-to-1 or 1-to-2 care ratios.

Dates: Starting June 17 and 24; July 1, 8, 16, 22 and 29; Aug. 5 and 12
Ages: 7–99
Cost: $1,600 $–$2,200, respite-fund eligible

Camp Korey (Mount Vernon)

Camp Korey provides a safe haven for families experiencing life-altering medical conditions. It’s more than just a camp, it’s a place where kids with serious medical conditions can just be kids — and it’s completely free. Campers spend their week living in cabins with other campers navigating similar medical journeys and can enjoy archery, arts and crafts, equestrian, campfire, stage night, Silly-O, fishing and boating, outdoor exploration, pool parties, and more. 

Dates: June 30–July 3; July 7–11, 14–18, 21–25 and 27–30; August 4–8, 11–15 and 18–21
Ages: 7–17
Cost: Free

Sunset Lake Deaf Camp (Wilkeson)

This program offers traditional camp activities as well as specially designed programs for the deaf. Volunteers who are fluent in American Sign Language are present in each cabin and available throughout the camp.

Dates: June 20–July 7
Ages: 10–15
Cost: $575

Lions Camp Horizon (Blaine)

Adults and kids who are differently abled can enjoy summer camp at this Lions Camp. Staff-to-camper ratios are 1-to-1 and 1-to-4, and two registered nurses are present at each camp. Campers can choose between Base Camp or Adventure Camp.

Dates: July 8–12, 15–19 and 22–26; Aug. 5–9 and 12–16
Ages: 12 and older (including adults)
Cost: $900–$1,300

Kiwanis Camp Casey (Blaine)

Kiwanis Club of North Central Seattle fully funds these weeklong camps for kids with mild to severe physical disabilities. The disability must be primarily physical, and campers must be able to communicate either verbally or via assisted device. Volunteer counselors and nurses help make this “the best week of the year” for many differently abled kids.

Dates: July 28–Aug. 3
Ages: 6–16
Cost: Free

Camp Goodtimes (Vashon Island)

This camp serves not only cancer patients but their siblings as well. Here, campers can enjoy activities in a medically supervised environment and just be kids. Pediatric cancer patients either receiving treatment or off treatment can attend with their siblings (bereaved siblings as well). Cancer patients must be cleared by their doctor to attend. Financial assistance is available for the ferry ride to Vashon Island.

Dates: June 23–29; July 14–20
Ages: 8–17
Cost: TBD

Camp Leo for Children with Diabetes (Auburn)

Camp Leo offers the only camp in Western Washington dedicated to children with Type 1 diabetes. At camp, kids living with diabetes can relax and enjoy summer camp activities while making friends with others who understand what it is like to live with diabetes. Medical staff includes pharmacists, physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners and dieticians.

Dates: July 16–21 and 23–27; Aug. 17–20
Grades: 3–12
Cost: Tiered pricing

Sunset Lake Abba’s Child Grief Camp (Wilkeson)

Kids who have experienced a major loss can spend mornings with certified grief counselors and then take part in traditional camp activities in the afternoon.

Dates: Aug. 10–14
Ages: 12–17
Cost: Free with acceptance from Abba’s Child

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